Harvard Faculty members reacted with sadness last night to news of President Griswold's death.
Informed of the news upon his return from Colgate University, where he received an honorary degree yesterday, President Pusey expressed his deep regret. "It is impossible to think that that gay and lively spirit is no longer with us," he said.
Pusey said that Griswold had been a close personal friend, and that it had been a custom for Mr. and Mrs. Griswold to spend Friday night at the Puseys on weekends of the Harvard-Yale football game in Cambridge.
David E. Owen, Master of Winthrop House, and Zeph Stewart, professor of Greek and Latin, both Yale graduates, paid tribute to Griswold as a great president of Yale.
Owen, who taught at Yale when Griswold was a student, called his death "a great blow not only to the Yale community but to American higher education." He recalled him as "a fugitive from the stock market" who returned to Yale after the crash in 1930 to pursue an academic career. "As a university president he revealed all the qualities of imagination and initiative that could have been wished for, and clearly he will be exceedingly difficult to replace," Owen said.
Stewart recalled that he had spent many pleasant moments with President Griswold over the past ten years. "Whit Griswold has been a champion of the best in intellectual life in Yale University and elsewhere," he said. "As president of Yale he has given it all the advantages of a vivid personality and a restless mind."
Former Secretary of State Dean Acheson, who visited with Griswold just yesterday, described his life as "a happy one, as the Greeks thought of happiness, for he exercised his powers to the full, achieving excellence in an environment affording him scope."
Griswold died last night in his 13th year as president of the university.